“Lion of Judah” Sculpture Erected in Jerusalem as Symbol of Friendship Between Christians, Jews

Rabbi Pesach Wolicki, contractor Amos Cohen and Deputy Mayor Fleur Hassan-Nahoum supervised the historic statue installation on May 5, 2020. (© Max Greiner Jr.)

Predicted rains held back Tuesday morning, May 5, 2020, so a magnificent new monumental bronze sculpture named the “Lion of Judah” could be installed in the heart of Jerusalem. The massive 11-foot long statue was permanently placed in Bloomfield Park, located between the Old City and new Jerusalem, behind the King David Hotel, in sight of Mount Zion and the Jaffa Gate. Amos Cohen, who is responsible for all 174 public sculptures in the city of Jerusalem, said on Tuesday:

“This the most beautiful of all the pieces of art we have in the city because it is a lion and the symbol of the city of Jerusalem. It means more to me than any other piece of art in the city. … My heart is filled right now. I love the Christian community. They do so much for the city of Jerusalem, and they do so much for the State of Israel and my heart is with you in friendship and thank you.”

At some time in the future a formal dedication and blessing of the lion statue will take place, but it has not been scheduled. Millions of photographs will be taken by tourists from around the world of this majestic symbol of Israel, King David, the city of Jerusalem and the Jewish Messiah. The ancient wall of the Old City in the background will forever identify this iconic lion sculpture with Israel. This internationally copyrighted monumental piece of fine art is expected to become one of the top tourist attractions in the Jewish nation.

The historic day was 14 years in the making. Giving a lion sculpture to Israel was the dream of American artist, Max Greiner, Jr. and his wife, Sherry. It has been their desire to give his most valuable No. 1 bronze casting from his signed and numbered life-size edition to the Jewish nation as an eternal symbol of friendship and love between Christians and the people of Israel.

The “Lion of Judah” sculpture is not just another lion statue, according to the artist. The massive 1,123-pound piece of bronze art was sculpted to specifically honor the God of Israel. Greiner, who is an evangelical Christian and strong supporter of the Jewish state, said:

“My goal with this realistic, yet stylized lion composition was to visually communicate majesty, dignity, strength and courage, while also expressing shalom. I prayed to the God of Israel that He would help me sculpt the lion’s face so it conveyed wisdom and authority, but also love and peace. I sculpted the original carving out of clay, patterned after the largest lion that ever lived. Then, I increased the size 5% for God! My art foundry, Eagle Bronze, also donated their profits on this project because the Christian owners, Monte and Beverly Paddleford, love Israel too!”

The 68-year-old, internationally collected professional artist (whose work has been owned by U.S. presidents, attorney generals, governors, senators, representatives and the stars of American business, sports, music and film) said: “This No. 1 Lion of Judah bronze sculpture is a gift of love and support from my wife, me and the millions of Christians around the world who stand with Israel!”

This imposing piece of fine art was placed in Israel thanks to the help, prayers and donations of thousands of Christians and Jews over many years. After the life-size art was carved on Aug. 10, 2017, the Greiners recruited their friends, Jeff and Barbara Anderson, founders of Leadership Inc, to collect donations from Christians to cover all the expenses. Art benefactor and president, Jeff Anderson, wrote: “Leadership Inc is pleased that our gift of the mighty Lion of Judah, on behalf of American Christian leaders, is now beautifully displayed in Jerusalem for the perpetual enjoyment of the people in Israel.”

The first major donor to the Lion of Judah art initiative were Christian leaders, Bob and Linda Morris, of Collinsville, Illinois. The president of Dodi Yavoh, a 28-year-old pro-Israel ministry, worked tirelessly for more than four years to see the lion statue placed. Linda wrote:

“As a leader of tour groups to Israel during my 58 trips to The Land, and because of my love for the Israeli people, I determined that Max Greiner’s Lion of Judah sculpture was destined to be placed in Israel as a permanent witness to the nations of G-d’s blessing and acknowledgment of Jerusalem as its eternal capital. Baruch HaShem Adonai!”

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SOURCE: Charisma News